Do you have oil on your property?

Determining if you have struck oil on your property requires a thorough assessment and analysis. To discover oil, there are some steps that are crucial for sustainable production.

  1. Research: Begin by researching the geology and history of your area. Look for information on crude oil deposits, past drilling activities, and any nearby oil fields or wells. Geological surveys, state agencies, and local libraries are valuable resources for this information.
  2. Engage Professionals: Consult with geologists, petroleum engineers, or oil companies. These experts can conduct surveys, analyze geological data, and provide insights into finding oil.
  3. Conduct Soil and Rock Sampling: Consider engaging a geologist to collect soil and rock samples from your property. These samples can be analyzed for the presence of hydrocarbon compounds associated with crude oil.
  4. Observe Surface Indicators: Look for any visible surface indicators that might suggest the presence of oil. These indicators include seepages, oil stains, or a strong odor of petroleum. Note that these indicators alone may not be conclusive evidence, but they can provide initial indications for further investigation.
  5. Seek Legal Assistance: If you suspect the presence of oil on your property, it is advisable to consult with an attorney experienced in mineral rights, property rights. They can guide you through the legal aspects, including lease agreements, contracts, and negotiations with oil companies. There can be a difference between surface property ownership and mineral ownership. Once it’s clear who the property owner is, you may have more options available to you regarding those property rights.

Remember, determining the presence of oil on your property requires expertise and careful analysis. Engaging professionals and conducting thorough research will help you make more informed decisions.

What locations typically have oil reserves on the property?

Oil and Gas reserves are typically found in geological basins.  A geological basin is a large-scale depression or trough in the Earth’s crust that is often filled with sedimentary rocks. It is characterized by its shape, which is bowl-like or basin-shaped, with higher elevation surrounding its perimeter. Basins can vary in size, the type of mineral resources available, and the level of mineral deposits. They play a significant role in the accumulation and preservation of oil and gas reserves.

Geological basins can be found all around the world, and they are typically located in areas where tectonic forces have caused the Earth’s crust to deform and create subsidence.

Texas Geological Basins where The Mineral Auction Works

In Texas, there are several major geological basins that have been significant in oil and gas production:

Permian Basin: The Permian Basin is one of the most prolific oil and gas basins in the United States. It is located in West Texas and southeastern New Mexico. It is known for its stacked reservoirs, which have contributed to its extensive hydrocarbon production.

Gulf Coast Basin: Extending along the Gulf Coast and into Louisiana, the Gulf Coast Basin is another major oil and gas province. It is composed of several sub-basins, including the Houston, East Texas, and South Texas sub-basins.

East Texas Basin: Located in eastern Texas, this basin has been a significant oil and gas producer since the early 20th century. It is characterized by faulted and folded rock formations.

Texas basins are organized by geological characteristics, including rock formations, structural features, and stratigraphic sequences. It helps us understand the potential for oil and gas accumulation.

Other Basins where The Mineral Auction Provides Services

If you have oil on your property, the basins where The Mineral Auction may auction mineral rights include, but are not limited to:

Williston Basin: Situated in North Dakota, Montana, and parts of Canada, it is known for its Bakken Formation and has seen a surge in oil production in recent years.

Appalachian Basin: Covering parts of Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, and West Virginia, it is rich in natural gas reserves, particularly from the Marcellus and Utica Shales.

Anadarko Basin: Located in Oklahoma and parts of Texas and Kansas, it is a major producer of oil and gas, with formations such as the Woodford Shale and Granite Wash.

San Juan Basin: Situated in New Mexico and Colorado, it is known for its natural gas production from coalbed methane and conventional reservoirs.

Denver-Julesburg Basin: Found in Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska, and Kansas, it is an important oil and gas basin, particularly with the development of shale resources like the Niobrara Formation.

Haynesville Basin: Covering parts of Louisiana, Texas, and Arkansas, it is known for its natural gas production from the Haynesville Shale.

Eagle Ford Basin: The Eagle Ford Shale Basin in South Texas is a big producer of oil and gas for the entire country.

Powder River Basin: Situated in Wyoming and Montana, it is known for its coalbed methane and conventional natural gas production.

What Happens if You Find Oil on Your property?

If you find oil on the surface of your property, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have a commercially viable oil supply.  In this instance, it is best to contact an oil and gas drilling operator in your area.  You can begin the process by contacting the regulatory agency in your area. They may have information on where to find the most reputable drilling operation in your location. Most agencies are responsible for the following activities in their respective jurisdictions:

Permitting and Regulation

Regulatory agencies issue permits for oil and gas activities, including drilling, completion, and operation of wells. The process involves reviewing applications, ensuring compliance with safety and environmental regulations, and setting conditions for the permitted activities.

Environmental Protection

Regulatory agencies establish and enforce environmental protection measures to mitigate the impact of oil and gas operations. This includes regulations related to water management, wastewater disposal, air quality, and habitat protection. Agencies monitor and enforce compliance to minimize environmental harm.

Well Monitoring and Reporting

Operators are required to monitor oil well performance and submit regular reports to regulatory agencies. This data includes information on production rates, well integrity, and other relevant metrics. Monitoring and reporting help regulatory agencies assess the health of proven oil reserves and ensure operational compliance.

Well Spacing and Pooling

Regulatory agencies set rules for oil well spacing to prevent interference between oil wells and optimize resource recovery. Pooling regulations allow operators to combine acreage for efficient reservoir drainage. These rules are designed to balance optimal resource extraction with environmental and operational considerations.

Rule Making and Enforcement, Policy Development

Regulatory agencies engage in rule-making processes to establish and update regulations governing the oil and gas industry. They enforce these rules through inspections, penalties, and other enforcement mechanisms. Additionally, agencies play a role in developing policies that guide industry practices and align with broader energy and environmental goals.

Research and Data Analysis

Regulatory agencies conduct research and analyze data to understand trends, assess resource availability, and inform policy decisions. This includes studying geological data, production trends, and the potential environmental impact of oil and gas activities. Research and data analysis contribute to evidence-based decision-making particularly in oil exploration.

Production Monitoring, Reporting, Analysis, and Quotas

Regulatory agencies monitor and analyze oil and gas production through operator reports. This information is crucial for assessing overall production rates, identifying trends, and ensuring that quotas (if applicable) are adhered to. Some regulatory agencies historically had the authority to set production quotas to stabilize markets, but this authority may vary by region.

Field Inspections

Regulatory agencies conduct field inspections to verify compliance with regulations. Inspectors assess well sites for safety, environmental protection measures, and overall operational compliance. Field inspections are a proactive measure to ensure that operators adhere to established standards.

It’s important to note that the specific processes and regulations can vary by jurisdiction, and regulatory frameworks are subject to change over time. For the most accurate and up-to-date information, it is recommended to refer to the official websites of relevant regulatory agencies in specific regions.

Oil and Gas Regulatory Agencies

An oil and gas regulatory agency is a government or quasi-governmental body responsible for overseeing and regulating activities related to the exploration, extraction, production, and transportation of oil and gas resources within a specific jurisdiction. These agencies play a crucial role in ensuring that oil and gas operations adhere to established safety, environmental, and operational standards.

The Railroad Commission of Texas

The Texas Railroad Commission (RRC) has historically played a crucial role in regulating the oil and gas companies in Texas. Despite its name, the RRC has no direct authority over railroads and has primarily focused on the regulation of the state’s energy resources.

Oklahoma Corporation Commission

The Oklahoma Corporation Commission (OCC) has been a key regulatory body overseeing the oil and gas industry in the state of Oklahoma.

Louisiana Department of Natural Resources (LDNR) via the State of Louisiana’s Online Electronic Reporting Information System(SONRIS) –

SONRIS (State of Louisiana’s Online Electronic Reporting Information System) is not a regulatory body itself but rather an online platform provided by the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources (LDNR) to facilitate electronic reporting and information access related to oil and gas activities in the state.

North Dakota Industrial Commission –

In North Dakota, the regulatory oversight of oil and gas reserves primarily falls under the North Dakota Industrial Commission (NDIC), specifically its Oil and Gas Division.

West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVEP) Office of Oil and Gas –

In West Virginia, the regulatory oversight of oil and gas reserves is primarily the responsibility of the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) Office of Oil and Gas.

Pennsylvania Department of Environment Protection, Bureau of Oil and Gas Management –

In Pennsylvania, the regulatory oversight of oil and gas activities, including the exploration, drilling, and production of oil and gas reserves, is primarily the responsibility of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PA DEP). Within the PA DEP, the Bureau of Oil and Gas Management specifically focuses on the regulation of oil and gas operations in the state.

Should you sell your Mineral Rights?

For mineral owners, deciding to sell your mineral rights is a deeply personal decision and can have a massive impact on your family. An oil company may be willing to pay money for valuable minerals. It could mean an infusion of cash either in a lump sum or steady long-term income. However several considerations must be made with respect to market conditions, future exploration potential, tax implications, legal considerations etc. If you are considering selling your legal interest in mineral rights, consider contacting a mineral rights ownership professional.

When to Contact The Mineral Auction if I own the Mineral Rights

After an operator extends a lease offer, it is a good time to contact the Mineral Auction. Selling mineral rights can have many benefits.  If you’ve already leased, or you have a producing well, we can help.  We are happy to review unleased minerals, but it’s very unlikely you’ll receive appropriate value until/unless it is leased. If you would like to learn more about selling your mineral rights or mineral ownership, contact us through a form on the website, or call (512) 698-2802.

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